Foie gras banned from more menus

27 February, 2008

Foie gras, dubbed by campaigners as "torture in a tin," has hit the headlines after being banned from both Royal and Michelin star menus.

Prince Charles has ordered his chefs to stop serving the controversial French pâté at his royal residences and has decided to review the Royal warrant of one of his supplier's- The House of Cheese in Tetbury- after the business refused to remove the pâté from sale.

The Prince confirmed the decision in a letter to animal rights group Viva! The group recently held a Day of Action against foie gras, which saw over 400 people take part in peaceful actions.

Viva! campaigns manager, Justin Kerswell, said: "There is nothing humane about mechanically inducing disease in a bird by forcing a pipe down its throat and making him consume such an abnormal quantity of food that his liver expands many times its normal size.

"The Royal approval for the campaign to make Britain foie gras free is invaluable. We ask consumers everywhere to give foie gras the elbow."

One of the country's top restaurants has also stopped serving foie gras after it was subjected to a campaign of threats and vandalism by extreme animal rights group, the Animal Liberation Front (ALF).

The two Michelin-starred Midsummer House in Cambridge has served the pâté since it opened but was forced to remove it from the menu after a brick was thrown through the window, anti foie gras slogans were sprayed across the walls, window panes were scratched and locks were glued.

ALF has claimed responsibility for the attack in an open email to a local newspaper. Danny Clifford, owner and head chef at the restaurant, told the Independent: "A few weeks ago I'd have said it was a question of giving my customers freedom of choice, but this is serious now.

"They've said if we don't take it off the menu the attacks will get worse. The police have advised that the ALF can get pretty violent, so we've been left with no choice. I have to take it off the menu for the sake of my staff, my family and my business."

Foie gras is produced by force feeding ducks or geese through a pipe inserted down their oesophagus. The process is repeated two or three times daily for two to three weeks until the birds develop fatty liver disease.

The pâté is not produced in Britain, as the government has made it clear that its production would contravene existing animal welfare regulations, but it is legal to import the product.





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